Features of the Experience of Loneliness among Adults Due to Their Personal Characteristics



The presented article is devoted to the study of the associations between the parameters of loneliness and the personal characteristics of adults. The main parameters of loneliness are: the general experience of loneliness, dependence on communication, as well as acceptance of loneliness and a positive attitude towards it. Among the personal characteristics, we considered the personality factors included in the Big Five model and sociotropy, which is a cognitive strategy reflecting a person’s focus on creating positive relationships with others and a general focus on society. The purpose of the study was to identify the presence and nature of the relationship between loneliness, the Big Five personality factors and sociotropy. It has been hypothesized that orientation to society and a high level of neuroticism are positively associated with the experience of loneliness, its rejection. Self-sufficiency, openness to experience and conscientiousness are associated with a positive attitude to loneliness, its resourcefulness. The study involved 131 people aged 18 to 55 years (M=31 years; SD=9.85), 26 men and 105 women. The following methods were used: the Differential Questionnaire for the Experience of Loneliness (K.N.Osin, D.A.Leontiev), the Sociotropy — Self-Sufficiency Questionnaire (O.Yu. Strizhitskaya et al.), Bulgarian version of the Social and Emotional Loneliness Scale for Adults (SELSA-S), Five-Factor Personality Trait Inventory NEO FFI P.T.Costa, R.R.McCrae, adapted by V.E.Orel, A.A.Rukavishnikov. Mathematical processing was performed on the basis of IBM SPSS 23.0 software. The results obtained confirmed the existence of associations between the parameters of loneliness and personal characteristics. Social uncertainty and neuroticism contributed to increased feelings of lack of emotional closeness or connection with people, as well as feelings of loneliness and isolation. In turn, an increase in the indicator of attachment, on the contrary, helped to reduce the overall experience of loneliness. Attachment and dependence on the opinions of others could increase the aversion to loneliness and the tendency to seek companionship at any cost. Self-sufficiency and openness to experience  contribute to the acceptance of loneliness and a more positive attitude towards this phenomenon. In addition, openness to experience, active imagination, preference for variety, mental flexibility, independence in judgment and evaluation, as well as sociability, activity, energy and optimism helped reduce the experience of emotional and social loneliness.

General Information

Keywords: loneliness, experience of loneliness, solitude, personality traits, Big Five, sociotropy, self-sufficiency, period of adulthood

Journal rubric: Empirical and Experimental Research

Article type: scientific article

DOI: https://doi.org/10.21638/spbu16.2024.106

Received: 15.09.2023


For citation: Murtazina I.R. Features of the Experience of Loneliness among Adults Due to Their Personal Characteristics. Vestnik of Saint Petersburg University. Psychology, 2024. Vol. 14, no. 1, pp. 96–112. DOI: 10.21638/spbu16.2024.106. (In Russ., аbstr. in Engl.)


Journal of personality,

Information About the Authors

Inna R. Murtazina, PhD in Psychology, Associate Professor, Saint Petersburg State University, St.Petersburg, Russia, ORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0002-2204-4376, e-mail: i.r.myrtazina@spbu.ru



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